Check out pics from the Tontons' tour kickoff in our slideshow.
Friday night's wonderful assortment of tasty sweet indie pop was just that -- delicious!
Now, you're probably wondering if you can you have some cheese with that opening description. Why yes, you can, metaphorically, at least. Imagine a platter of triple cream brie cheese and fig jam, which is a good balance of sweet but not too sweet, making it pretty satisfying to my taste buds. Yeah, it was a pretty satisfying show.
It seemed like the rest of Friday night's attendees shared the same consensus, judging by how Fitzgerald's upstairs room was buzzing with energy throughout the evening. There's no better way to put it -- pretty much the whole crowd seemed nothing short of happy.
The night launched with Vincent Priceless as Portal Walker, a fairly new spacey experimental electronic act from Houston. The set ranged from ambient to more chaotic and, for use of technical terms, dance-y. The right kind of dance-y is good for getting crowds in a good mood, and Portal Walker did just that. I dug it. I can say that he effectively portal-ed the night in.
When A Sea Es took the stage, I really couldn't tell that it was in fact their first show. This four piece set lead by Austin Smith donned in what seemed to be a native American headdress was a good transition between the ambient music provided by Portal Walker and the poppy sound of the Wild Moccassins.
The tunes I heard of A Sea Es could be compared to the likes of maybe Of Montreal's melodies and Built to Spill when some heavier guitar bits broke through their songs. Mid performance the lead singer broke out a ukulele for the song "Sleepy," turning their sweet sound even sweeter for just that song -- almost into some kind of samba without the percussion. Their closing song "Doubler" had a great keyboard hook, leaving me wanting to hear more. From this first show, I can tell that they will have many more to come.
I hadn't seen the Wild Moccasins, who have deservedly grown to be one of Houston's most popular four-piece indie pop bands, in about three years and their catchy melodic dynamic remains just as great as then. The one difference I had noticed was how much their fan base had multiplied.
It was a mostly teenaged crowd that were losing themselves in the show, and in their own great adolescent bliss. A good amount of people in the crowd were singing and dancing along to many of their songs ranging from older ones like "Spanish and Jazz" to newer ones such as "Skin Collision Past." I was personally hoping to hear the Wild Moccasins cover Blondie's "Dreaming," as they did the last time I saw them, one of my favorite moments watching the band.
I never know what to think each time I see The Tontons play. They have a fairly unique dynamic contrast with lead singer Asli Omar's jazzy voice and Adam Martinez's powerful guitar riffs. Right after their opening single "Golden," fans by the stage were hopping to the music so hard that they almost caused a mini mosh pit.
One fan was even crowd surfing. Houston has much love for The Tontons. The only lag in energy was towards the end of the show, when The Tontons covered "Trying Your Luck" by The Strokes. Asli's soulful voice didn't quite work for that song. They kicked butt performing all of their own songs, so, regardless, this was a successful tour kickoff indeed.
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.